Answering the age-old question
So you’re watching a new music video or reading a news story online and you see an item that captures your eye – it could be the leather jacket a singer is wearing in a video or a watch Katie Holmes happens to be wearing in a picture. Imagine being able to hover your mouse over those images and a link pops up, automatically taking you to the website of the retailer who makes the item and to a web compilation of all vendors who make similar items. Startup company, Graymatics, recently did a conference demo last week of its software, showcasing its ability to identify products being shown in a visual medium and provide links for consumers to click and purchase. If product-recognition software begins to catch on, it could change the face of shopping and retailer advertising forever.
How it works
The software is similar to face detection offerings in that it matches the featured item to a database filled with images from numerous retailer websites. However, face detection software can only match items shown in still images; Graymatics can match items shown in both still and moving images, expanding the realm of advertising available to companies. Now while viewers are surfing the web or watching their favorite videos and see an item that they’re interested in, they can simply hover their mouse, click and purchase. It increases the ease of access between consumers and products they’re interested in.
A new era of shopping
The success of this software offering will depend on the accuracy of its matches and identifications. The company feels confident as other competitors in this space rely on human input to tag the images stored in the database. If the company continues to grow and its merits are proven, this would be the first fully automated detection and matching software in the retail industry, relying solely on computer vision and machine learning techniques. This may wreak havoc on consumers’ bank accounts but it’s a breakthrough for retailers looking to place their items where their target consumers naturally gravitate. As soon as they see an item they like, they’re just a click away from being able to add it to their online shopping cart.